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What getting fired looks like in different countries


Layoffs in the US are often quick and dirty.

As depicted by George Clooney in “ Up in the Air,” American company managers or execs typically meet with their employees to tell them they must leave before giving them just a few hours to pack their belongings.

In other countries, however, this practice would be considered absurd — or even cruel. In Germany and other European nations, laid-off employees get weeks to stick around so they can finish projects and get a head start on applying to new jobs, Erin Meyer, a professor at global business school INSEAD who has studied how cultural differences impact businesses, told Business Insider.

“Firing in the US is like pulling off a Band-Aid: you have a problem, you pull out the Band-Aid, it hurts a lot, and the problem’s gone,” she said. “In Europe, it’s more like boiling a lobster: you put the lobster in, slowly the lobster cooks, and finally the time is done.”

Here’s what it’s like to be fired in six different countries.


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